“A compelling kaleidoscope of mind-warping collective improv that’s a mix of electronica, ritualistic roots-y grooves, trance rock and avant jazz” – JAZZWISE
“This is invigorating music for the here and now.” – MARLBANK
“Excellent.” – Darren Bergstein, DMG NYC
“Shiver and Bourne skilfully mould and sculpt their sound to create music that can be simultaneously mysterious, beautiful and frightening” – Chris Baber, JAZZ VIEWS
Matthew Bourne – piano, memory moog
Andy Champion – electric bass
Joost Hendrickx – drums
Chris Sharkey – electric guitar
On July 16 2021, Shiver met up with Pianist Matthew Bourne at his house in Airedale, Yorkshire. Hungry to make music following various lockdowns, cancellations and disappointments, the quartet embarked on a ferocious two-day journey of exploratory music-making. The weather was good, the connection was immediate. There was much laughing, tea-drinking and storytelling. In the evening, the stove was lit and we listened to music: Stanley Clarke, Paul Simon, Sarah Vaughan, Scott Walker, Eugene McDaniels.
The music from this two day session will be released as 2 volumes.
Volume 1 is the first take we played on Day 1, in its entirety.
Matthew shifts from Piano to MemoryMoog throughout. Each member of the band spends time in the foreground and background without ever dominating. The group is what’s important here, everyone improvising without explicitly soloing. Ideas come, are explored, then fade before new ideas emerge with confidence and patience.
This music is a good memory from a difficult time and it’s our pleasure to bring it to you now.
This compelling collaboration merges the distinctive styles of two extraordinary artists: the trio Shiver and acoustic-electric keyboardist Matthew Bourne. The album is a mesmerizing journey through diverse musical landscapes, blending electronic elements with jazz influences innovatively and refreshingly. The tracks on this album emphasize an impressive range of sonic textures and experimental sounds. Shiver’s mastery of electronic music production intertwines seamlessly with Matthew Bourne’s unique approach to jazz, resulting in an entrancing fusion of disparate sounds and styles. The compositions are rich in depth, offering intricate layers that invite listeners to delve deeper into the music. At times, they project a sense of stillness, tinged with minimalistic interplay atop a spacious musical platform. According to the press release, the musicians were intent on making exploratory music after Covid pandemic lockdowns, which was a common plight among most artists once the commotion settled down. One of the standout aspects of this album is the way it challenges conventional notions of genre. It effortlessly transitions between moments of tranquil introspection and bursts of energetic intensity, keeping the audience engaged throughout the musical odyssey. The collaborative efforts between Shiver and Matthew Bourne are evident in the synergy between their respective styles. The group- based improvisation feels meticulously crafted, with each note and sound carefully curated to create a cohesive and immersive listening experience. Hence, no single musician dominates the session. Shiver Meets Matthew Bourne Volume 1 is a testament to the creativity and artistry of its creators. It is a must-listen for music enthusiasts looking for a boundary-pushing soundscape that extends the borders of musical expression. Hopefully, Vol. 2 is on the way. – Glenn Astarita, ALL ABOUT JAZZ https://www.allaboutjazz.com/shiver-meets-matthew-bourne-volume-1-shiver-meets-matthew-bourne-discus-music
The pianist MATTHEW BOURNE had a collegial visit in Airedale, Yorkshire in mid-July 2021 by SHIVER, consisting of electric guitarist Chris Sharkey, electric bassist Andy Champion and drummer Joost Hendrickx. The host is one who kept his fingers supple with Sean Noonan as Born to Brew, with Franck Vigroux, Mzylkypop, Keith Tippett, Alabaster DePlume. For 20 years he has been familiar with Sharkey in Leeds as, through The Geordie Approach, Anthropology Band and James Mainwaring, link to Martin Archer’s Discworld, Champion has a discus connection with Corey Mwamba. Hendrickx has played with Bourne in Dave Kane’s Rabbit Project and drums with Shatner’s Bassoon, The Sorcerers and the Abstract Orchestra. [Shiver] Meets Matthew Bourne Vol 1(Discus 149CD) presents what was created during their Friday brainstorming – Vol 2 will bring more. ‘Functional’ is a jam with all the ingredients of an electrojazzy-ambient dreamscape. Form follows function means: monotonous beat and clattering hail of punches, monotonous riffs in incessant flow, the strings loop and bubble, instead of chords the horizontal progression dominates, for which Bourne also stutters with Memory Moog and throws clinking waves. From the piano he fingers dim sounds that shine crystalline in the moonlight, Sharkey also pulls luminous threads to moody dancing and tobbling beats. In this respect, for the growling and frizzing grooving Vorwärts, in which the four alternately kick and hold the track, there is already a top, booming veiled, milky flooded. Hammered staccato and guitar loops keep the tempo high, Hendrickx crashes into howling sound loops, with which Sharkey almost steals the show through effects and live processing. Until Bourne taps him and in turn amazes him by circling a cogwheel, heading left towards the end and leaving us amazed and orphaned. [BA 118 rbd] – Rigobert Dittmann BAD ALCHEMY
Le pianiste Matthew Bourne, qui fut le dernier partenaire de Keith Tippett sur un autre double cd Discus (« Aeolian » discus120) , rencontre le trio Shiver, composé d’Andy Champion (elb), Joost Hendrickx (dr) et Chris Sharkey (elg, live processing et prod). L’album s’ouvre des loops de guitare rythmés par des percussions sur les toms et un piano avares de quelques notes espacées. Puis la machine s’emballe. Au climat premier vient se joindre les cymbales, la basse prend sa place, le piano se fait plus loquace, l’exploration s’insinue dans des contrées chaudes et inexplorées. Un ensemble. C’est bien ensemble que les quatre musiciens déroulent une trajectoire mouvante suivant l’écoute réciproque et les idées qui surgissent au fur et à mesure du développement de cette pièce de 42 minutes qui va crescendo jusqu’à atteindre le paroxysme dans une émulation proche de la transe. C’est le volume 1, un second volume paraitra bientôt. – Philippe Renaud, IMPROJAZZ
Have your cake and eat it. A 40 minute-plus single track ‘Functional’ is yes – a ”single” in the Spotify sense. And the streaming behemoth of the beggarly royalty also bafflingly calls singles ”albums”. So for once this is an album – in an LP length sense anyway – actually more a veritable symphony given that Matthew Bourne is involved – no not the excellent dance choreographer of the same name but the equally great free-piano genius who should be a household name but isn’t and probably will never be. Taking on the mantle from past collaborator Keith Tippett there is a switching over from piano to Mini Moog by Bourne and you get via the latter a futuristic sheen to the endeavour. The recording thankfully isn’t one of these lonesome remote occasions involving one man and his dog but more a litter of musicians let off the leash in the same room together – Shiver simply click on a personal chemistry level by going all Bourneful – the four of them gathering apparently to also tea drink and admire the stove. Joost Hendrickx pants along like the best big dog clambering on to the drum kit, pounding a good deal while the interesting textural stuff is provided by that fine guitarist Chris Sharkey of Trio-VD and Bilbao Syndrome renown. Shiver are a trio by the way: our friend from the north bass guitarist Andy ”Shoes for Losers” Champion is a stolid presence + Sharkey and Hendrickx complete that sensation. Music for the mind and the body. Don’t wake up to their sound in the distant future when they all are long gone by then. This is invigorating music for the here and now experimenting in form and idiom that sheds more light on the state of the art than people content to run the changes incontinently all day long as ”under-conversation” once in a blue moon in a function room will ever realise. – MARLBANK
Keyboardist Bourne’s become something of a critical darling these last few years and rightly so, traversing both the acoustic and electronic worlds with the greatest of ease. Aligned on this fascinating work with the trio Shiver (guitarist Chris Sharkey, bassist Andy Champion, and drummer Joost Hendrickx) finds him in some stalwart company. Ostensibly an electroacoustic blowing session, there’s simply way too much sonic autopsying going on here to warrant this as some random afternoon hang-out. Bourne’s piano is the more muted of his instrumentation, interestingly-enough: he takes great pleasure in erecting some wonderfully plastic, perplexing architecture out of his trusty Memory-Moog, using the acoustic keyboard more for filigree than shadow. His cohorts reckon with him in the grandest of ways across this single, forty-two minute plus get-together. Hendrickx’s drums do the devil’s dance at first, acceding space to Sharkey’s atmospheric striations while Champion’s bass scuttles about. Weird, oblique sounds hover in the mid-distance; you could swear there’s dogs barking every time Hendrickx thumps a snare or wrangles some twisty metallic motif from his kit. It’s essentially pointless to emblazon this music with anything as pithy an appellation as ‘jazz’ or even ‘EAI’ but moments arise: Bourne’s crystalline, Ahmad Jamal-like licks eventually giving way to his Moog’s mysterioso topographies; Sharkey’s alien cat-calls stretching its sunset horizons to breaking point; Hendrickx tripping the northern lights fantastic. At the midway point, the whole thing enters an almost-groove that could be some long lost Mwandishi composition rescued from the depths of exploratory hell. Excellent. – Darren Bergstein, DMG NYC
A meeting of Leeds’ experimental jazz giants: maverick piano / Moog maestro Bourne and cult electronic trio Shiver explore a pretty compelling kaleidoscope of mind-warping collective improv that’s a mix of electronica, ritualisitc roots-y grooves, trance rock and avant-jazz. – Selwyn Harris, JAZZWISE
Matthew Bourne (piano, linn-advanced memorymoog), Andy Champion (electric bass), Joost Hendrickx (drums) and Chris Sharkey (electric guitar, live processing, production) came together for 2 days of jamming at Matthew’s house after years of corona lockdowns, and part 1 of this session event is now released in the shape of this CD. The music is experimental, but not crazy or outrageous, because there are some good rhythms and vibes going on here that give it memorable melodies. There’s even a bit of 70s funkiness and a lot of space-rock madness to be heard. The music is definitely free-jazz/fusion/post-prog orientated, yet open-minded and in search of whatever this might lead to. I could easily call this instrumental record a 70s krautrock record actually, because that is how it feels, but I’ll bet both the freestyle-jazz and post-progfans out there will like this as well! It’s one long song, which is a 42 minutes counting jam session of the 4 musicians. Definitely an interesting session, and I already look forward to part 2. – Strutter’zine
Shiver and Bourne skilfully mould and sculpt their sound to create music that can be simultaneously mysterious, beautiful and frightening – Shiver is an electro-improvising trio based in North East England that has been active since 2013 and which released four eponymous EPs during its first seven years of existence – #1” (2013), “#2” (2014), “#3” (2015) and “#4” (2020). The last named of these features a single forty minute track, “I Need You To Focus”, edited together from a series of group improvisations, with the band making extensive use of live looping and other electronic techniques. In 2021 they released their first official full length album for Wesley Stephenson’s New Jazz and Improvised Music Recordings imprint. “Night School” was comprised another long form piece, the fifty three minute title track, initially written by Sharkey and shaped by the band as they improvise freely around the framework of the composition with real time processing altering the sounds of guitar, bass and drums to create electronic soundscapes that alternate between the calming and the unsettling. My review of “Night School” can be found here. – https://www.thejazzmann.com/reviews/review/shiver-night-school – I also recall enjoying a performance by the Shiver trio at the 2016 Cheltenham Jazz Festival in which they successfully combined elements of jazz, rock and electronica to compelling effect, making highly effective use of looping and layering techniques. My review of that show can be found as part of my Festival coverage here; – https://www.thejazzmann.com/features/article/sunday-at-cheltenham-jazz-festival-01-05-2016 – This latest release, which appears on saxophonist Martin Archer’s prolific Discus label finds the members of the Shiver trio collaborating with musical kindred spirit Matthew Bourne, a musician regularly described as a “piano maverick”. Bourne has long been part of the jazz, improv and experimental music scene in Leeds and beyond, playing both acoustic and electric keyboards, either as a soloist or as a frequent collaborator with the UK’s leading improv musicians. On a personal note I recall seeing Bourne give a remarkable solo piano performance at London’s Vortex Jazz Club way back in 2006 when he was part of a triple bill at the Dalston Summer Stew series curated by Led Bib, who had opened the show in noisily boisterous fashion. Bourne’s intense solo set was then followed by a second collective sonic attack from Nottingham noiseniks Pinski Zoo. More recently I favourably reviewed Bourne’s recorded collaboration with the duo Nightports, musician-producers Adam Martin, based in Leeds, and Mark Slater, based in Hull. – https://www.thejazzmann.com/reviews/review/nightports-w-matthew-bourne – Bourne also appears on “Skeleton Blush”, the 2020 album from the sextet World Sanguine Report, led by the extraordinary vocalist and guitarist Andrew Plummer. Review here; – https://www.thejazzmann.com/reviews/review/world-sanguine-report-skeleton-blush – Bourne has also been part of the band Tipping Point, led by saxophonist James Mainwaring, whose 2015 début album “The Earthworm’s Eye View” is reviewed here; – https://www.thejazzmann.com/reviews/review/tipping-point-the-earthworms-eye-view – Bourne is also a favourite of former Jazzmann contributor Tim Owen, who has reviewed a number of the pianist’s live performances, with a variety of different collaborators, for this site. This latest collaboration between Bourne and Shiver took place in 2021 at the pianist’s home. The scenario behind this encounter is perhaps best explained via the artists’ album liner notes; “On July 16 2021, Shiver (guitarist Chris Sharkey, bassist Andy Champion and drummer Joost Hendrickx) met up with Pianist Matthew Bourne at his house in Airedale, Yorkshire. Hungry to make music following various lockdowns, cancellations and disappointments, the quartet embarked on a ferocious two-day journey of exploratory music-making. The weather was good, the connection was immediate. There was much laughing, tea-drinking and storytelling. In the evening, the stove was lit and we listened to music: Stanley Clarke, Paul Simon, Sarah Vaughan, Scott Walker, Eugene McDaniels. The music from this two day session will be released as 2 volumes. Volume 1 is the first take we played on Day 1, in its entirety. Matthew shifts from Piano to MemoryMoog throughout. Each member of the band spends time in the foreground and background without ever dominating. The group is what’s important here, everyone improvising without explicitly soloing. Ideas come, are explored, then fade before new ideas emerge with confidence and patience. This music is a good memory from a difficult time and it’s our pleasure to bring it to you now”. Volume 1 of this collaboration consists of the single forty two minute track “Functional”, which begins quietly and thoughtfully, with ambient soundscaping and the atmospheric rustle and rumble of percussion. It’s vaguely unsettling, the mood suggesting a pent up tension waiting to be released. Bourne’s piano drops glacial shards into Sharkey’s doomy guitar soundscapes, whilst electronically treated drum beats bubble and fizzle beneath the surface, like depth charges. Gradually the piece gathers momentum, the rhythms becoming more insistent, the soundscapes more abrasive and threatening. Bourne’s piano alternates between jagged high register interjections and bellicose low end rumblings as the piece continues to unfold organically. At one juncture he takes a solo that is relatively ‘conventional’, in his terms at least, as Hendrickx’s drums softly chatter and clatter around him. Contrast is everything and this is followed by a more clangorous and dynamic section distinguished by some astonishing sounds, presumably generated by a combination of Sharkey’s guitar FX and Bourne’s MemoryMoog. Hendrickx continues to be a busy presence at the drums but Champion’s role is less easy define, there are few conventional ‘bass lines’, but his electric bass is also subject to processing and he is a more substantial presence than might at first be apparent.
A passage of unaccompanied piano cools things down again before the mood darkens once more as the members of Shiver return, with the sounds of electronically processed drums and eerily keening guitar taking centre stage before Bourne inserts jagged shards of glacial, Keith Tippett like piano. A rhythmic pulse then emerges, around which swirl the sounds of electronically treated guitar and bass, with Bourne continuing to move between synth and piano. Subsequently, the drums come to the fore, supported by squelchy synth bass sounds, among other musical components. Bourne then continues to experiment more widely on the MemoryMoog, producing some remarkable sounds ranging from organ like drones to futuristic sci-fi soundscapes. In the right hands the synthesiser can still be a powerful, distinctive and significant instrument. The next section, with Bourne restored to the piano, is a bubbling, swirling vortex of sound, like Steve Reich on speed, that eventually collapses in on itself. We are left lost in space as the drums drop out leaving the other instruments to pulse and crackle in the emptiness before Hendrickx returns for the loosely structured closing section. When the quartet finally stop playing a voice is heard to remark “Functional”, thus giving this shifting, freely improvised magnum opus its title. Like its predecessor “Night School” this is an album that makes for immersive listening and again it’s a work that needs to be listened to in its entirety as Shiver and Bourne skilfully mould and sculpt their sound to create music that can be simultaneously mysterious, beautiful and frightening. “Volume 2” will be awaited with much interest. – Chris Baber, JAZZ VIEWS https://www.thejazzmann.com/reviews/review/shiver-meets-matthew-bourne-volume-1
Not to be confused with the internationally renowned choreographer of the same name, Yorkshire-based pianist, composer and analogue synthesizer maestro Matthew Bourne (b. 1977) is nevertheless a force to be reckoned with in his own right. A serial collaborator who has worked with such notables as Keith Tippett, John Zorn, Nostalgia 77, Annette Peacock and French electro-acoustic trailblazer Franck Vigroux, he documents here an improvised jam with Chris Sharkey’s ambient-jazz power trio Shiver. Recorded over a two-day period at Bourne’s home studio in Airedale, Volume 1 consists of a single take from day one. While heavily improvised, there are more than enough anchor points to establish a clear sense of shape and form. Imagine, if you will, a mash-up of Paul Schütze’s Phantom City, Bill Laswell and Derek Bailey’s Arcana and David Torn’s collaborations with Sonar, and you’ll have an idea of what to expect. It starts gently enough, the opening exchanges having an almost dreamlike quality. Then Bourne’s doom-laden chords gradually become more insistent, the piece quickly gaining rhythmic impetus as pent-up tensions are released. Piano soon gives way to Memorymoog, a polyphonic synthesiser from the 1980s, and the impact is as beguiling as it’s otherworldly. As much as this extended improvisation is characterised by its rapid turnover of ideas, there’s an impressive economy which sees not even the smallest kernel of information wasted. As the sonic layers deepen, musicians rotate between foreground and background, generating new patterns which nudge the music in subtly altered trajectories. Parallels to the ego-less and endlessly fascinating improvisations of AMM are not too fanciful, so well attuned are the four musicians. A terrific listen from first to last. Volume 2 will share the fruits of Saturday’s session and can’t come quickly enough. – Fred Grand, JAZZ JOURNAL https://jazzjournal.co.uk/2023/05/01/shiver-and-matthew-bourne-volume-1/
Take four experimental musicians, starved of musical creativity due to the various lockdowns and put them together for two days for open mind cleansing free improvisations. The musicians involved were: Matthew Bourne (piano, Memory Moog), Andy Champion (electric bass), Joost Hendrickx (drums) and Chris Sharkey (electric guitar). This disc apparently documents the very
first of these sessions in its entirety, and starts off (for the first 10-minutes) sounding something like the Australian band The Necks, or maybe some smaller group improvisation works of Keith Tippett, after which things start to fragment and become more dissonant for a while and then shift towards AMM territory, eventually ending up as a kind of freaky avant funk, of the most avant-radical type, before taking a few more direction changes in its final minutes, amounting to quite a strange journey. – Alan Freeman AUDION
Shiver come from Leeds and are a project of guitarist and electronic tinkerer Chris Sharkey, who is also active in Geordie Approach (see “Shields”). Together with Andy Champion (bass) and Joost Hendrickx (drums), Sharkey dedicates himself with Shiver to more free-format sound creations at the intersection of free rock and electrified jazz. So far, the band has released three EPs, and now recently another album on Discus Music, which is the focus of this review. On July 16, 2021, the Shiver trio met with key-pusher Matthew Bourne (who is/was active on World Sanguine Report, among others) at his home in Airedale (Yorkshire) to jam. Material from it, more precisely an almost 45-minute number, apparently the first piece from that day that was recorded, was then released on CD by Discus in January 2023, packed in a bright yellow digisleeve. “Shiver Meets Matthew Bourne Volume 1” is written on the cover and also on the side of the back of the cardboard folding part, which could be the title of the disc. If you go to the page in the Discus catalog, this is the album “Meets Matthew Bourne Volume 1” by Shiver. Well, from me. In addition, it can probably be assumed that there will be another, or even more, probably from the same session. Piano, synthesizer, electric guitar, electric bass and drums were used by the four protagonists in free improvisation. However, the sound result is much more accessible than one would expect. Virtuoso and colorful, the sounds scurry along sometimes jazzy (sometimes almost funky), sometimes rocking, sometimes more formless tone-tinkering. Filigree guitar patterns, growling bass lines, hectic percussion, reverberating strumming work their way forward in an angular rumbling or lightly prancing way, enriched with all kinds of electronic howls, beeping and hissing. As already noted, the music never gets too weird or wild, rather the sounds glide, bounce or wander forward in a disciplined and well-calculated manner, either with a clear jazzy touch, or freely rocking or ethereal reverberating. The music is somewhat reminiscent of the productions of the Australian trio The Necks, who also improvise on a basis of piano, bass and drums, often electronically polluting and psychedelic repetitive rocking. Shiver and Bourne have orchestrated their compositions differently, which are also much more electrified, and do not indulge so much in hypnotic repetitions. Of course, The Geordie Approach isn’t that far away either. People who appreciate improvised, impulsive-surging, jazzy-rock-electronic music, or can imagine that this is the case, should try “Meets Matthew Bourne Volume 1” by Shiver. – Achim Breiling, BABYBLAUE SEITEN http://www.babyblaue-seiten.de/album_21137.html#oben
Situated midway between the mesmerizing improv of bands like The Necks and the spacey soundscapes of Rock jam bands, this ad-hoc quartet adroitly blends elements of each to maintain consistency throughout this disc’s single extended track. Shiver, with electric bassist Andy Champion and drummer Joost Hendrickx, benefits from the experience of its third member, guitarist Chris Sharkey, who also plays with Charles Hayward, as well as working as a producer recording, remixing and mastering sessions for various musicians. One of those in keyboardist Matthew Bourne, who bolsters his usual approach with the likes of Laurent Dehors by playing memory Moog as well as his more usual acoustic piano. Dramatic foreshadowing with keyboard clips, percussion smacks and ascending waves of tremolo electronics, within minutes establishes a pliable groove of bass pulsations, drum paradiddles and guitar flanges that judders throughout the improvisation. Fluid, and with horizontal motion, the oscillating form is a constant sonic backdrop. Because the foursome is definitely not a Rock band, contrapuntal asides occur though. These mostly encompass pedal-pushed and knob-twisting guitar flanges, emphasized tremolo whirls from the electronic keyboard and, unsurprisingly, distinctive acoustic piano asides. Solidified with shivery pedal-steel-like echoes and hearty drum ruffs as the piece widens, background voltage throbs retreat enough for a duet of drum rim shots and strong electric bass stops and later a similar blend of accelerated guitar frails and piano key stopping. Vocoder-like mumbling and watery burbles from the bass and guitar wrap up the section, with the piece climaxing as piano pedal point and drum beats wriggle the interpretation back to the initial theme which fades away in an electronic-induced haze. Taken as a whole, sounds are just hypnotic enough to pulsate freely, but nimble enough to not mask animated solo contributions. The session also makes one wonder just how admirable and/or distinctive Vol. 2 will be. – Ken Waxman.JAZZ WORD https://www.jazzword.com/reviews/shiver/
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